2 Aug 2019 14:03

Tajikistan seeking return of almost 600 citizens from Iraq, Syria - Tajik FM

DUSHANBE. Aug 2 (Interfax) - The Tajik authorities are seeking the return home of nearly 600 Tajik citizens being held in jails and camps in Iraq and Syria, Tajik Foreign Minister Sirodjidin Mukhriddin said at a press conference in Dushanbe.

"A total of 43 women and one child are currently being held in Iraqi jails. In addition, we found out that 554 Tajik citizens, including 86 women, 228 girls, and 240 boys, are currently in Syrian camps. A working group comprised of employees of the country's ministry and agencies has been set up to ensure our citizen's return," Mukhriddin said.

In the first six months of 2019, the Tajik authorities returned 84 Tajik children, whose fathers fought in extremist groups and mothers were convicted for abetting terrorism, from Iraq, he said.

The head of state is monitoring the return of Tajik citizens home, Mukhriddin said, adding that the country's diplomatic missions and offices abroad are cooperating on this issue with the governments of Iraq and Syria and international organizations.